I'm still on the tiny book kick. I just discovered this little cookbook that I found somewhere - a garage sale, flea market, estate sale, not sure where.
This book isn't really tiny - it's 4" x 6" so I'd consider it a small book. It's actually an address book that's been converted into a receipt book/cookbook. I had to do some sleuthing to figure out who the book belongs to. Since it's from 1889 and a lot of it is written in pencil, it was difficult to make out all of the writing. But in really faint writing I can see that Mrs. Snipes was the industrious owner of this little treasure. Oh, actually she was the treasurer of the Ladies Aid Society of the M.E. Church of Plainfield, Indiana.
Here's the receipt part of the book:
The ladies sure did enjoy some high brow music. Most of their money seems to have been spent on concerts. Pretty steep prices in those days - $13.41 & $17.30. They must have hired the entire Plainfield symphony!! Those ladies were cultured.
They also spent $15.00 for furniture for the parsonage (is this where they held their meetings, or were they donating furniture to the parson?)
They must have had a grand Thanksgiving Supper for a total of $18.85. Of course, we don't know how many members were served but I'd guess that back in 1889 you could feed about 150 people for this amount.
There wasn't a photograph of Mrs. Snipes in the book, but I'm imagining that she looked a little like this:
Is this a Mrs. Snipes or what? Can't you just imagine her keeping the expenses for the ladies aid society, then running home to her kitchen, donning an apron and baking some yeast biscuits? Mrs. Snipes also looks like she would enjoy a musical interlude now and then.
In my fantasies I imagine that Mrs. Snipes was a friend of Mrs. Reagan (perhaps the grandmother of Ronald?). Mrs. Reagan was kind enough to divulge her secret cake recipe for inclusion in this little informal cookbook. I'm thinking that the Ladies Aid Society were planning to publish a cookbook to raise funds for their next Thanksgiving Supper or maybe another concert. And Mrs. Snipes was keeping the recipes in this little book until they could find a publisher.
Then the cookbook never got published for lack of recipes - there's only about 10 or 12 in this book, hardly enough for a reputable cookbook. So Mrs. Snipes put the little book away and several years later her grandson found it and scrawled his little autograph on one of the pages hoping that Grandma would see it:
The only recipe that is legible enough to include (in case you want to try a recipe from 1889) is one for Persimmon Pudding. Want to try it?
1 pint persimmons
1 pint milk (rub through sieve!)
2 large spoons flour
1/2 tea sp all spice
1 pint water
1 quart milk
1/2 cup sugar
Beat eggs - add flour and spices. Then mix and sweeten to taste.
Maybe you shouldn't try this recipe. Why is there a pint and also a quart of milk? Maybe I'm reading the recipe wrong. See what you think: